Maj Benjamin O. Tate
Major Benjamin Tate was born in Yakima, Washington. He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserves in 1999 and served six years as a Landing Support Specialist with Alpha Company, 4th Landing Support Battalion. While a reservist, he graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and served one tour of duty at Al Asad, Air Base, Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). Shortly after the deployment to OIF, he completed Officer Commander’s Course and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marine Corps.
Following completion of The Basic School (TBS) and flight training, he was designated a Naval Aviator in September 2008 and was assigned to Marine Medium Helicopter Training Squadron 164 (HMMT-164), Camp Pendleton, to fly the CH-46E “Mighty Battle Phrog”.
In April 2009, 1stLt Tate reported to Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 165 (HMM-165), Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar, where he served as the Ground Safety Officer. He first deployed with the “White Knights” to support the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC) aboard the USS Dubuque and USS Pelelieu. During that deployment, Captain Tate supported the MEU’s Humanitarian Aid/Disaster Relief efforts in Pakistan following significant flooding that decimated the region.
In May 2011, Captain Tate began his transition to fly the MV-22B Osprey. Following completion of his training at Marine Medium Tiltrotor Training Squadron 204 (VMMT-204), MCAS New River, North Carolina, he returned to MCAS Miramar reporting to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 161 (VMM-161) in November 2011.
While serving with VMM-161, Capt Tate was a Schedule Writer, Current Operations officer, Future Operations officer, Pilot Training officer, Assistant Operations officer, S-1 Officer, and Aviation Safety Officer through two deployments: Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) in Bastion Air Base, Afghanistan 2012, and the 15th MEU 2015.
In June 2016, Major Tate returned to TBS, Marine Corps Base, Quantico, Virginia where he supported their mission to train and educate Marine Corps officers as the Headquarters and Support (H&S) Company Commander and the Combat Instructor Battalion (CIB) Executive Officer. During this time, Major Tate was the primary instructor for Standards of Conduct and Security of Classified Materials, as well as an assistant instructor for Field Exercise (FEX) I, Mission Planning, Orders Development, and Moral Reasoning. Major Tate also graduated from the Command and Staff College, Distance Education Program at the Marine Corps University, Quantico, Virginia.
Following TBS in June 2018, Major Tate executed orders to Marine Aircraft Group 36 (MAG-36), Okinawa, Japan where he served as the Director of Safety and Standardization. As a member of the MAG-36 staff, Major Tate made regular recommendations to the MAG commander involving safety and subordinate squadron operations, as well as acted as the Air Tasking Order Development Officer for Marine Expeditionary Force Exercise (MEFEX) 2019.
In August 2019, Major Tate reported to his current command, VMM-262, as the Executive Officer. Major Tate serves with the “World Famous Flying Tigers” with pride and contentment as he helps to lead the squadron to mission success in every endeavored.
Major Tate’s personal decorations include the Strike Flight Air Medal with numeral two, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.